Is a BBC documentary about Hamas’ child soldiers upcoming?

The video below shows footage taken at a youth camp for 15 to 21 year-olds recently organized in the Gaza Strip by Hamas’ Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades.

Among the few Western media outlets which reported that story were the Washington Post and the Telegraph.  However, a tweet from Lyse Doucet suggests that the BBC is also going to cover the topic at some point.

Doucet tweet Hamas camp

Whether or not this is part of the documentary on children in the Gaza Strip about which Doucet was interviewed by the Guardian last September is not clear. It will however be interesting to see whether the opportunity is used to inform BBC audiences about Hamas’ use of child soldiers – including during the most recent conflict – and whether or not it will be clarified that one of the UN conventions signed by the Palestinian Authority in April 2014 was the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, according to which no soldier should be under the age of 18.  

2 comments on “Is a BBC documentary about Hamas’ child soldiers upcoming?

  1. I do understand about the UN Convention re the rights of the child, but I think we need to be careful about our use of the word “child” in this context; it may well come back to bite us. For 15-year olds, I would suggest the appropriate term might be “youth”. I don’t know how many of the alleged 500-plus “children” killed in Protective Edge were over, let’s say, 13 but, to the rest of the world, the term “children” usually conjures up visions of youngsters under ten or so. By using that word in the context of sixteen and seventeen year olds, who are indeed often sent into battle by Hamas, we may be running the risk of inflating even further the ridiculous statistics, and giving an even bigger stick to the world with which to beat us.

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